2020 St. Louis Supercross 250 Class Race Report

Austin Forkner returns to winning ways.

Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Austin Forkner clinched his first 250SX main event victory since the Indianapolis Supercross last year.
Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Austin Forkner clinched his first 250SX main event victory since the Indianapolis Supercross last year.Brown Dog Wilson

Austin Forkner clinched his first 250SX main event victory since the Indianapolis Supercross last year at round 2 of the 2020 Monster Energy AMA Supercross season inside The Dome at America’s Center in St. Louis, Missouri. The Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki rider began the evening by winning his heat race. In the main event, he grabbed his second holeshot of the season and led all 18 laps to take his first win of the year in front of nearly 100 family and friends who came to watch him at his home state race.

“I’m really happy to get our first win of the season tonight, especially at my hometown race with a ton of family and friends in the stands,” Forkner said. “It’s just been a special night for me. I wasn’t feeling the best about how I was riding and where I was last weekend, but this weekend couldn’t have been more different. I felt good all day and comfortable on my bike, and I hope we can keep that momentum going and continue clicking off wins.”

Monster Energy/Star Racing/Yamaha’s Justin Cooper finished in the runner-up spot and maintains the series point lead heading into round 3 at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California.
Monster Energy/Star Racing/Yamaha’s Justin Cooper finished in the runner-up spot and maintains the series point lead heading into round 3 at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California.Brown Dog Wilson

On the heels of his first Monster Energy AMA Supercross win, Justin Cooper finished in the runner-up spot in St. Louis. The Monster Energy/Star Racing/Yamaha rider didn’t get off to a great start in the main event, but quickly advanced from seventh to fifth. He continued to charge throughout the race and moved into second with five laps remaining, effectively extending his lead in the Western Regional 250SX Class Championship point standings to five over Forkner.

“Last weekend I had it pretty easy,” Cooper pointed out. “I was just out front clicking off my laps. This weekend was a different story. I felt good all day, but I didn’t put myself in the best positions in the races tonight. I just had to put my head down, take my time, and come through the pack. Once you get the feeling of victory, you don’t want to lose it, but this feels like a win tonight. It was a good learning curve for me. We’re going to hold the red plate and we’re going to hold onto it tight. We’re going to fight for this championship.”

Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM’s Brandon Hartranft achieved a career-best third place result inside The Dome at America’s Center.
Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM’s Brandon Hartranft achieved a career-best third place result inside The Dome at America’s Center.Brown Dog Wilson

After riding inside the top five for the majority of the race, Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM’s Brandon Hartranft moved into podium contention with five laps to go and held strong in the final laps to secure a career-best finish of third.

“Honestly, I’m still in shock about what happened [in St. Louis],” Hartranft said. “This podium couldn’t have come at a better time for me. The team and I have put in a lot of work this off-season and I definitely couldn’t have done this without them!”

JGRMX/Yoshimura/Suzuki Factory Racing’s Alex Martin was less than a bike length away from landing on the podium in St. Louis.
JGRMX/Yoshimura/Suzuki Factory Racing’s Alex Martin was less than a bike length away from landing on the podium in St. Louis.Brown Dog Wilson

JGRMX/Yoshimura/Suzuki Factory Racing’s Alex Martin got off to a fifth place start in the feature race and reached fourth place on lap 14. In the final four laps, he closed the gap on Hartranft and took the checkered flag less than a bike length apart. The Minnesota native’s fourth place finish in St. Louis puts him tied for fifth place in the championship point standings.

“It was nice to be back racing in the Midwest as St. Louis is the closest race to home for me,” Martin shared. “We made small changes for the main that seemed to help as it was the best I felt and rode all day. [I ended] up three-tenths out of a podium position with fourth on the night and we’re two points out of third in the championship. I’m excited to keep the momentum going heading into Anaheim next weekend!”

Geico Honda’s Jett Lawrence (83) finished inside the top five in his second pro Supercross race in the United States.
Geico Honda’s Jett Lawrence (83) finished inside the top five in his second pro Supercross race in the United States.Brown Dog Wilson

Geico Honda’s Jett Lawrence rode in second place for the majority of the main event, but a mishap with a Tuff Blox set him back in the results. Regardless, the 16-year-old Australian captured his first top five finish in only his second pro Supercross race in the United States.

“My weekend was up and down,” Lawrence said. “I qualified good with the fifth fastest [lap time], but the heat race was a complete disaster. I rode like a complete rookie! Thankfully I pulled it together somewhat in the main. I rode a good race and was ready to challenge for the win with three minutes left in the [race] before I clipped a Tuff Blox, which damaged my rear brake and locked it on, forcing me to come into the pits. It was kind of a bummer to have that happen, but it’s okay because I learned a lot and am ready to battle at the front this weekend in Anaheim!”

Gas Monkey Energy/AJE Motorsports/Husqvarna’s Jacob Hayes put his FC 250 inside the top 10 for the first time this season.
Gas Monkey Energy/AJE Motorsports/Husqvarna’s Jacob Hayes put his FC 250 inside the top 10 for the first time this season.Brown Dog Wilson

2020 Western Regional 250SX Class Championship Standings

Penrite Honda’s Luke Clout put his CRF250R in seventh place inside The Dome at America’s Center. “Coming away inside the top 10 is what I wanted, so I’m pretty happy with seventh,” Clout said. “We are heading in the right direction and the weekend has been great. Now I’m looking forward to racing at Anaheim again next week. The bike is good and the team is working hard to make sure we have every chance to be up front, so hopefully I can keep on improving each week.”
Penrite Honda’s Luke Clout put his CRF250R in seventh place inside The Dome at America’s Center. “Coming away inside the top 10 is what I wanted, so I’m pretty happy with seventh,” Clout said. “We are heading in the right direction and the weekend has been great. Now I’m looking forward to racing at Anaheim again next week. The bike is good and the team is working hard to make sure we have every chance to be up front, so hopefully I can keep on improving each week.”Brown Dog Wilson
Position Rider Brand Points
1 Justin Cooper Yamaha 49
2 Austin Forkner Kawasaki 44
3 Brandon Hartranft KTM 37
4 Dylan Ferrandis Yamaha 34
5 Alex Martin Suzuki 32
Jett Lawrence Honda 32
7 Jacob Hayes Husqvarna 29
8 Derek Drake KTM 28
9 Christian Craig Honda 22
Michael Mosiman Husqvarna 22
Penrite Honda’s Mitchell Oldenburg had a small crash mid-race, which dropped him back in the pack. After picking himself up, he ultimately took eighth overall. “St. Louis was a decent night considering last weekend and the week I’ve had; I’ll take an eighth!” Oldenburg exclaimed. “Dr. G helped me out a lot this week and got me comfortable [and] my body working as best as it could. The little tip-over in the main was unfortunate, but I put my head down and charged as hard as I could and came away with eighth, so I can’t complain.”
Penrite Honda’s Mitchell Oldenburg had a small crash mid-race, which dropped him back in the pack. After picking himself up, he ultimately took eighth overall. “St. Louis was a decent night considering last weekend and the week I’ve had; I’ll take an eighth!” Oldenburg exclaimed. “Dr. G helped me out a lot this week and got me comfortable [and] my body working as best as it could. The little tip-over in the main was unfortunate, but I put my head down and charged as hard as I could and came away with eighth, so I can’t complain.”Brown Dog Wilson
JMC Motorsports Husqvarna’s Carson Brown clinched his first top 10 finish of the season with his ninth place finish in the feature race.
JMC Motorsports Husqvarna’s Carson Brown clinched his first top 10 finish of the season with his ninth place finish in the feature race.Brown Dog Wilson
Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM’s Derek Drake (57) had a mishap off the start during his heat race. He went on to win the LCQ and capture his second consecutive top 10 result in the main event.
Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM’s Derek Drake (57) had a mishap off the start during his heat race. He went on to win the LCQ and capture his second consecutive top 10 result in the main event.Brown Dog Wilson